Fertilising made easy
Have you ever wondered why some people gardens and pot plants are larger and healthier looking? One likely thing that they are doing well, is fertilising. Like people, plants need correct nutrition to reach their full potential. However they need fertiliser only when they are actively growing, during Spring, and into Autumn.
What do all those letters and numbers mean?
All fertilisers are labelled with 3 numbers. These Numbers represent the ratio of nitrogen (N), phosphate (P), and potassium (K), present in the fertiliser. In general terms, nitrogen promotes foliage growth, phosphate encourages healthy root development and flower production, and potassium adds to the overall health of the plant and helps to build disease resistance.
Which Fertiliser do I need?
Like our diets, plants nutrition needs to be in basic balance for strong performance. When you buy your plants, they have been professionally grown for you and will be in great shape. In general terms plants in containers or hanging baskets will require more feeding than those planted in the garden, as the garden plants can access soil fertility once they have established themselves.
As a guide, look for roughly the following analysis for these uses:
15.4.26 for a heavy flowerer like the Bubblegums range of Happitunias;
126.96.36.199 for our native collection and
27.6.9 for the Aussie Winners range of indoor plants.
Types of Fertiliser
Water Soluble – mix this with water and apply with a watering can, following the directions on the packet. This will give a quick response and will normally need to be applied every couple of weeks during the growing/ flowering season.
Slow Release – slowly releases a small amount of nutrients over a period of several months so you apply it less often. How much is released at a time is dependent on microbes in the soil that are more active at warm temperatures.
Controlled Release – is directly controlled by soil temperature verses microbial activity. This type of fertiliser is more exact and usually a bit more expensive. It lasts from 3 months to more than a year, depending on the formulation. Choose the formulation you need based on the length of growing season of the plant.